Clubhouse Japanese Restaurant – Vancouver, BC

Clubhouse Japanese Restaurant
255 W 2nd Avenue
Vancouver, BC
(604) 879-8998

Taking a clean cut approach here, going picture-less of the actual food as photos were not taken, and solely relying on a cropped image from Google Earth of the restaurant’s exterior.

Following an alcohol-centered gathering (to be written about at a later time after I collect all my thoughts), a post-event meal was had at this surprisingly satisfying little Japanese restaurant with an odd sounding name – Clubhouse.  Mixed in among a row of commercial buildings along the busy 2nd Avenue corridor, its easy to pass by without so much as giving this place a second look, so it was fortunate we were on foot.  Frankly, I’d seen it before but hadn’t really thought about trying it out, but a member of our posse suggested I’d be amused at how good it was, and with that we popped inside.

Immediately coming in from the slowly fading daylight into a darker room with a wooden motif which was clearly dated, it felt more like some kind of random pub.  In fact, I’d guess it probably was used as that kind of space in the past and not much had been done with the interior since.  But low and behold, a few of the tables were occupied despite it being later in the evening, a good sign.  With just a little bit of room left in our bellies, our food choices were simple.  Mine turned out to be a small plate of their deep fried and fresh baby octopus.  Little tender morsel, body and legs intact together.  Nicely done and lightly seasoned.  And not a greasy mess either.  Just the way I prefer it.

My other dish took longer than the others at our table to arrive.  I should have been prepared for that, as anyone knows, a decent okonomiyaki can take some time to get it cooked through just right.   Throw in the fact mine was loaded with various ingredients from the sea, I had to be patient.  When it eventually did arrive, wow, I was impressed.  Nothing like that overly stuffed and thick doughy mess that I had gotten years ago at Modern Club.  This one was well executed, a crispy outer crust that led into a tender but not oil soaked inside mix of veggies and the seafood.  Of course I’d asked for plenty of katsuobushi (dried bonito flakes) to be added on top – they ask you upon ordering, I guess some people don’t like it?  The mix of sweet sauce and Japanese mayonnaise completed the presentation.

I would certainly come back to the Clubhouse for this again.  Perhaps the best place in town from my experience so far for okonomiyaki.  I love surprises and knowing that you can still find spots like this in the city, where the cover doesn’t necessarily convey the truth about the inside of the book, until you give it a shot.

Clubhouse Sushi on Urbanspoon

7 thoughts on “Clubhouse Japanese Restaurant – Vancouver, BC

  1. I remember hearing about Clubhouse’s okonomiyaki awhile back but was a bit hesitant to try it seeing as I haven’t truly found one that can compare to ones found in Osaka. Since it seems to have your seal of approval, I might venture out and try it next time I’m in the area. I assume they have seafood as well as meat options for the okonomiyaki?

    • Frankly not a lot of choice in town for okonomiyaki, but I’ve found Clubhouse the best of the lot and the closest to a Japanese home-style preparation. I had the seafood but believe there had a few other options as well, including more meat based. Let us know if you do ever get around to trying it and drop us a note again! 🙂

  2. Unfortunately there is no place in town that serves a “real” okonomiyaki. By that I mean, Hiroshima-fu okonomiyaki which is so superior to an Osaka-fu as to render the Kansai variant invalid.

    Or is there? If anyone knows of anywhere doing a quality Hiroshima-style okonomiyaki, please don’t keep it a secret!

    • That’s probably a fair bet. I don’t see anyone taking the time to do the layered approach that would entail. I think people are more familiar with the mixed variety and its easier (and quicker) for the kitchen to handle. If you do find out anything, let us know! I’ll keep my eyes open too…

    • I’m sure calling Hiroshima style “real” okonomiyaki would have all Osakan’s up in arms haha. Though I find both equally satisfying, I haven’t found a place either that serves up true Hiroshima style okonomiyaki. I think it’s about time someone capitalizes on this idea and opens up a full fledged okonomiyaki restaurant in Vancouver.

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